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Discussion Starter #1
Too long, didn't read version: Should I try and sell/trade-in my '01 SES with 96K miles for an '01 - '05 SES/L with the Duratec engine? Is it foolish to attempt to switch to a car with more miles in the hopes that the transmission would already have been replaced?

Lengthy rundown: My car is giving subtle signs that I'm heading towards the fun, major repairs in the next year or so. Transmission is shuddering a lot and spending a bit too much time hunting between gears. I've checked the fluid, and it's a bit too dark, but not very thick at all. Maybe flushing it would fix all that, but in any case, it's an '01 with 96K miles, so the transmission is going to go pretty soon, right? Also, my cam sensors may be needing a replacement, as the engine will (very rarely) chirp a bit and the oil light will sometimes flicker on (get this) when I'm in park and lightly pushing in the brake pedal before putting on the parking brake. Yeah. The oil level is fine, so I'm not sure if that's just a glitch, or if the synchronizer is starting to go and the car is vaguely detecting irregularities with the oil pump.

I really like my car, but, ideally, I'd bump up to a Duratec engine for its power, increased fuel mileage, and overall newness. The flex fuel is cool and all, but the only E85 station is 15 minutes north of where I live. Not to mention you lose money as the prices aren't low enough to match the reduced fuel economy.

Kelley's almighty blue book states my car is worth about $3000 if I work hard and sell it myself, or a paltry 1650 trade-in. The perfect situation, for me, would be to sell my car and "upgrade" to an '01 - '05 SES/L with the Duratec, keeping the hot, dark blue paint and six seats. The price range I'm seeing is anywhere from mid $5000s to high $7000s.

But I'm at a loss as to what to do. My car could almost be worth as much as a transmission change, but is it too risky to hit up the nicer car with more miles (say ~110K) in the hopes they'd already changed the transmission? Would any car with more than 100K miles still need a transmission job? I have $2000 of spending money on me, so the difference in cost between my car and the upgraded Taurus would be roughly the price of a transmission job. My car is totally paid off, bought it a little more than 3 years ago for $2500. A flippin' sweet deal for an excellent car. I've heard nothing but horror about people with car payments, but my living expenses right now are so incredibly tiny.. And I don't have any credit score as I've never bought anything on credit.. Dunno, dunno.
 

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Don't bet on higher mileage cars having new transmissions. Unless they have paperwork from a reputable source (i.e. NOT Aamco), assume it's original. Even though lots of people will predict doom, a whole lot of these cars make it to a lot more than 100k on the original transmission.

If I were in your position, if the rest of the car is in good shape, I'd probably fix whatever problems you have now, drive the car until the wheels fall off, and replace the transmission somewhere along the line if/when it fails. Until then, change the fluid (don't have it power flushed - the transmission should always be allowed to pump its own fluid). If the chirping is indeed the CPS, change it ASAP. But then, I'm from the rust belt and I see no sense in dumping a car that isn't rusted out :lol2:

If you do go for the Duratec, don't do it on account of fuel mileage - it'll be the basically the same, unless your Vulcan isn't running well at all. It will be more powerful, and if you don't have an AX4N transmission now, it will shift a little cleaner.

The question you need to think about is whether or not you can get a better car than yours would be after the repairs for the cost of the repairs + whatever you can get for your car...speaking from a purely economic standpoint, keeping in mind that any used car you buy with 100k+ miles is going to need work...i.e. if it has a new transmission, it'll probably need new struts and springs, etc. I don't really see the sense in trading a 2001 with 96k on it for a similar-age car with more miles, unless you REALLY want a Duratec and REALLY can't or won't pay for one with really low miles. Low mileage G4s (well under 50k) can be had for under $7-8k...less if you look hard enough.

Random tangent on blue paint: The only years with actual dark blue are '00-'01...it got lighter after that. The later True Blue is a great color, though - one of my favorite colors on the G4. There's also Patriot ('03 only) with is the really bright blue, and Windveil, which is sort of a medium metallic blue, sort of like a bluer Denim Blue from the earlier cars. Most of the PA state Tauruses are Windveil.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Hmm.. Are you sure you aren't biased because you also drive an '01 SES? :wink:

Yeah, after going back and forth on it many times, it's become pretty apparent that I should be grateful for what I have and drive it for many years yet. Also 'cause there are very, very few Duratec Tauruses being sold right now. :p

Is Louisville too far south to be in the Rust Belt? For a second, I thought it was almost as north as Pittsburgh, but a glance at a map showed my stupidity. Pittsburgh feels like a Rust Belt kind of city to me, as most of what I've seen there is depressing. Abandoned after the steel meltdown and whatnot.

Hey, your paint tangent was quite useful, I hadn't read anything on the Gen4 colors. It's disappointing that they stopped the super deep, Medium Royal Blue Metallic (what a name!) that my car has. I know I've seen the periwinkle-esque blue ones, but I haven't the foggiest about the other colors. How come the Encyclopedia stops with the Gen3 colors? I'd like for someone to at least scrounge through people's signatures/garages and come up with all the different colors. Though some of the other TCCA members have some really nice looking red Tauruses, the dark blue is my favorite.

Even more of a tangent: I could really use some touch up paint for a few deep scratches on my car (the most unsightly being from where the jerks jacked up my body panel. I still haven't gotten over that. :() Is this page accurate?
 

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The remaining color shades can be found in the order guides.
 

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QUOTE (Blank @ Jun 18 2009, 10:11 PM) index.php?act=findpost&pid=733451
Hmm.. Are you sure you aren't biased because you also drive an '01 SES? :wink:

Yeah, after going back and forth on it many times, it's become pretty apparent that I should be grateful for what I have and drive it for many years yet. Also 'cause there are very, very few Duratec Tauruses being sold right now. :p

Is Louisville too far south to be in the Rust Belt? For a second, I thought it was almost as north as Pittsburgh, but a glance at a map showed my stupidity. Pittsburgh feels like a Rust Belt kind of city to me, as most of what I've seen there is depressing. Abandoned after the steel meltdown and whatnot.

Hey, your paint tangent was quite useful, I hadn't read anything on the Gen4 colors. It's disappointing that they stopped the super deep, Medium Royal Blue Metallic (what a name!) that my car has. I know I've seen the periwinkle-esque blue ones, but I haven't the foggiest about the other colors. How come the Encyclopedia stops with the Gen3 colors? I'd like for someone to at least scrounge through people's signatures/garages and come up with all the different colors. Though some of the other TCCA members have some really nice looking red Tauruses, the dark blue is my favorite.

Even more of a tangent: I could really use some touch up paint for a few deep scratches on my car (the most unsightly being from where the jerks jacked up my body panel. I still haven't gotten over that. :() Is this page accurate?[/b]
Nah, not too biased...I'll be buying another one after this coming winter which will be newer, low mileage, and have a Duratec. :lol2: I used to have a '93 with a 3.8 that still had an original transmission that worked at 150k when I sold it.

Used Tauruses seem to come and go in waves...a couple months back, there were some fantastic ones for sale. Lately, not so much...just keep your eye out. When you do decide to get another one, don't settle...there are so many out there that you WILL find one with exactly what you want for (within reason) what you want to pay for it.

Yeah, Louisville is a bit too far south to be rust belt. I currently split my time between Pittsburgh and Meadville...thankfully I only have half a winter left in the lake-effect-snow land of Meadville (a little south of Erie). You'd be surprised at Pittsburgh now...big steel has been replaced with lots of high tech industry and world-class medical facilities. It's a lot different than even ten years ago...it really is a pretty decent town now. That's not to say it doesn't still have its problems...but it's much cleaner and more appealing. You'll probably see it on TV when the G20 summit is here later...I have a feeling a lot of the people who laughed at the press conference will be pretty quiet then. :lol2:

I don't have any experience with AutomotiveTouchup.com, but at a glance at least their paint codes look accurate. I've used PaintScratch.com on several cars and have had great results.
 

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I don't think it's worth the hassle of getting basically the same car even if it comes with the more powerful engine. You'll still need to deal with the post-used car maintenance plus you most likely won't know the history of the car.
 

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You know this car and what its potential problems are. The other car - you don't. Stick with this one.

If it's rust free then it's worth fixing.
 

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yeah i wouldn't suggest getting rid of it for a car pretty much the same age and more mileage.. (even though i pretty much did something similar.. lol) 96k isn't bad for a G4 Taurus, it's not bad for an 01 period. I've seen worse in both aspects, plus if you were to trade it in, you run the risk of not having the tranny replaced and 15-20k down the road having to replace it.. IMO just get the fluid flushed, change the filter and enjoy.
 
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